By VERONICA KIRIGO
“The Alere Pima CD4 provides an effective and affordable tool in the management of HIV patients, specifically designed to serve the needs of the health care professional in the field, laboratory or in the doctor’s office,” said Yorston.
Yorston explained that diagnosis of HIV during the window period — early infection stage, has not been possible, hence delaying intervention.
However, she explained that using the new test kit will enable health workers identify HIV shortly after a person gets infected.
Usually, people are told to get tested after three months of having unprotected sex and then wait for a similar duration of time that is the window period for confirmation.
But this new gadget, promises to be a game changer, as it can capture the virus at an early stage, hence eliminating the window period.
Yorston said this would ensure that the spread of new infections is averted, as people are aware of their status.
Research has shown that about 54 to 70 per cent of individuals are newly-infected by the 25 per cent of those who are unaware of their HIV infection.
Currently, studies show that available antibody tests miss 10.5 per cent of HIV infections in some high-risk populations because they don’t detect antigens.
The pima technology is a revolutionary point-of-care solution that can provide an absolute CD4 count to HIV infected patients in remote locations, who may otherwise have restricted access to testing. This is because majority of the remote areas have no electricity or proper infrastructure.